Onion Fertilizer: Improvement in Marketable Yield of Vidalia Onions

by Mike Usry February 13, 2016

It has been a few years, but the results of this particular study have been realized again and again on other onion stands.  A few years back we conducted a study to see if improvement in marketable yield could be achieved through the application of our humic acid and fertilizer combinations on test plots of “Georgia Boy” onions.  The test was conducted on unequal size plots Southwest of Statesboro, GA.

What we found was not noticeable to us at first.  Sure we enjoy onions and love those sweet Vidalia's and we had to learn what a marketable yield meant and how onion size plays a big part in that.

Treatment

Material Applied

Application (lbs/acre N-P-K-S)

Ultimate Tea + Fertilizer

 

150N-80P-80K-96S

 

Ultimate Tea

4 gal/acre

December 15th

10-10-10 (12% S)

40N-40P-40K-48S

January 17th

10-10-10 (12% S)

40N-40P-40K-48S

February 8th

Ultimate Tea

2 gal/acre

February 23rd

CaNO3

70 lbs N

Ultimate Tea

 

Negligible

December 15th

Ultimate Tea

4 gal/acre

February 8th

Ultimate Tea

2 gal/acre

Green Mine + Fertilizer

 

150N-80P-80K-96S

December 15th

Green Mine - Dry

174 lbs/acre

December 15th

10-10-10 (12% S)

40N-40P-40K-48S

February 8th

Green Mine - Dry

87 lbs/acre

January 17th

10-10-10 (12% S)

40N-40P-40K-48S

February 23rd

CaNO3

70 lbs N

Standard

 

150N-80P-80K-96S

December 15th

10-10-10 (12% S)

40N-40P-40K-48S

January 17th

10-10-10 (12% S)

40N-40P-40K-48S

February 23rd

CaNO3

70 lbs N

 

Results

Treatment

Total Yield

Jumbos

Mediums

Marketable (%)

Ultimate Tea + Fertilizer

1115

895

7

81%

Ultimate Tea

153

85

26

73%

Green Mine + Fertilizer

1119

939

14

85%

Standard

1103

676

30

64%

 

Conclusion & Recommendations

The results of the study prove the anecdotal results that have been provided by customers. The combination of liquid Ultimate Tea and a fertilizer program show great improvement in regards to marketable yield and increased bulb size. Keeping in mind that this was a few years ago before our development of Liquid Fish Hydrolysate and our involvement with the FertALive program.

Based on this study and our current developments our recommended application for Onion Fertilizer;

  • Apply GreenMine in late fall at a rate of 200lbs per acre
  • Apply Jump Start Soil Conditioner at a rate of 2 gallons per acre 1 month prior to planting
  • Apply Liquid Fish Hydrolysate twice times during the grow-out
    • Space fertilization applications 30 days apart
    • Apply at a rate of 3 gallons per acre diluted 1:25 ratio
  • Apply Ultimate Tea at a rate of 1 gallon per acre every 45 days post-planting

We feel that this application rate will continue to provide a great improvement in onion size and marketable product.





Mike Usry
Mike Usry

Author

Mike is the founder of Southland Organics. He is an avid gardner and leads his family in a sustainable lifestyle. Mike holds his degree from the University of Georgia and his MBA from the University of South Florida.



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